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Written by Stephanie
(2/15/2013 10:46 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Great connections, Stephanie, penned by TimLee
Emma sees and hears Mrs. Elton annoying Miss Fairfax: she witnesses Miss Fairfax pushed too far, and actually take the quelling steps that she has avoided to this point, quitting her company when she can not silence her. Within a half an hour, Jane Fairfax begs Emma to conceal her absence, so that she can refresh her spirits with a solitary walk back to Highbury.
Emma, despite her own evidence, immediately attributes the whole to Jane Fairfax being annoyed with her aunt!
She never understands Mr. John Knightley's lack of forbearance with her father, because she understands and accepts his foibles. I truly hope that after the novel, Emma becomes accepting and understanding to almost the same degree with Miss Bates as she always has been with Mr. Woodhouse.
As for Emma equating herself with Mr. Knightley, it is amazing how very similar they are -- or maybe not, since Mr. Knightley has been forming her character for two decades now. Maybe it is more amazing that several re-reads came and went before I realized their similarities. Their differences are obvious, but their parallels pop up to me now, too.
They feel the same about Frank Churchill's excuses and foolishness, their disapproval differing only in degree. They both miss good qualities about people they have decided to know nothing about, and are both proved wrong when they begin to become acquainted. They both think that the honesty of their intimacy, and chaffing of their strong personalities might cause the other to love them less than they would like. They both know how to cajole and comfort Mr. Woodhouse, and move to protect him, when his prejudices about health would cause friction with those around him. They both appreciate Jane Fairfax's excellencies, but (!) prefer an open temper...
I wonder if Mr. Knightley ever said to himself that he would be happy if Emma simply did not marry Frank Churchill -- as Emma wishes Mr. Knightley will stay single, unattached to anyone else?
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